Feature Article from Conley Woods

Theros Set Review: White

Conley Woods

9/27/2013 10:01:00 AM

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Welcome back to day five of our Theros set review! If you have been following along all week, you will know that we have already taken a look at blue, black, red, and green, which leaves us smack in the middle of white today. That means we will be looking at each white card and evaluating it within the context of both limited and constructed.

To help us out, we have two scales; One is for Limited and is the same scaled we have always used, straight from WotC themselves. The other is for Constructed and has been modified from past reviews to help with clarity, so check it out:

Constructed

5: Fives are ever-present cards that heavily warp a format or see heavy play across multiple formats. Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Deathrite Shaman, and Tarmogoyf are good examples of fives.

4: These cards tend to have support roles across multiple formats or be tier one cards in at least one. Spell Pierce is an example of the former while Thragtusk is an example of the latter. I expect to rate a lot of things as fours that are actually fives and vice versa while I feel out this new system but in both cases, these are going to be highly desired cards.

3: These are the bread and butter cards of a set, usually doing all of the essential things needed for a format, but doing them at a good rate. Cards like Oblivion Ring, Izzet Charm, or Diregraf Ghoul would be found here.

2: These cards are generally much more restrictive in use and application than a three, but they serve a similar purpose. You will see more sideboard or niche cards, like Skullcrack, Heartless Summoning, or Gladecover Scout.

1: These are not going to see much play, but they have an outside chance. These tend to be weak or narrow sideboard options or extremely narrow main deck cards. Most ones will not ever make it into a winning list, but they have potential to do so.

0: These are unplayable in constructed regardless of context. These tend to be the cards designed to balance limited, like Grizzly Bear or Siege Mastodon or are narrow with a poor output, like Artificer's Hex.

*Any card that gets an X.5 rating just means I can see it falling to either side of the equation given the right metagame or environment.

Limited

5.0: I will always play this card. Period.

4.5: I will almost always play this card, regardless of what else I get.

4.0: I will strongly consider playing this as the only card of its color.

3.5: I feel a strong pull into this card's color.

3.0: This card makes me want to play this color. (Given that I'm playing that color, I will play this card 100% of the time.)

2.5: Several cards of this power level start to pull me into this color. If playing that color, I essentially always play these. (Given that I'm playing that color, I will play this card 90% of the time.)

2.0: If I'm playing this color, I usually play these. (70%)

1.5: This card will make the cut into the main deck about half the times I play this color. (50%)

1.0: I feel bad when this card is in my main deck. (30%)

0.5: There are situations where I might sideboard this into my deck, but I'll never start it. (10%)

0.0: I will never put this card into my deck (main deck or after sideboarding). (0%)

And with that, let's move on to the cards!

Mid
Low
 Battlewise Valor
$0.17
$0.01
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Renaissance Games 1 $0.01
HouseofCards Winston 11 $0.01
Mtgaok 1 $0.01
Midwest Jedi 4 $0.01
GalacticTCG 20 $0.01
BaT Comics Games 5 $0.01
Wood Tower Gaming 1 $0.01
Immortals Inc 29 $0.01
Get Some Game 6 $0.01
Defiant Fox Games 1 $0.01
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Battlewise Valor Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Battlewise Valor

Constructed: 1

While I don't think this will be particularly popular, with heroic running around, there is a good chance people stretch what they consider to be playable a little bit in order to fit enough beneficial targeting into their deck.

Limited: 2.0

A little worse than Giant Growth obviously, but that scry can be invaluable at times. White is not supposed to be getting the king's choice of pump spells anyway, so I think this will be fine and appreciated for the most part.

Mid
Low
 Cavalry Pegasus
$0.18
$0.01
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MTGCCG and More 16 $0.02
Cloak and Dagger 1 $0.02
GalacticTCG 25 $0.02
MiscellaneousMagic 1 $0.03
Mana Rock Gaming 1 $0.03
debras cards 5 $0.03
The Gaming Cantina 44 $0.03
BaT Comics Games 5 $0.03
Mages Library 4 $0.03
Adventure Games Osh 4 $0.04
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Cavalry Pegasus Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Cavalry Pegasus

Constructed: 1

Perhaps there is some really nice home for this in a tribal human deck? The effect reminds me a lot of Gavony Riders except it lacks the same creature type and takes some set up. This is very fringe playable.

Limited: 2.0

There are 33 humans in Theros, most of which are common and uncommon of course and not very many of them fly. This might seem mostly harmless, and alone it is, but with a few humans out, you get to take Trained Condor to another level. Also wears some auras nicely.

Mid
Low
 Celestial Archon
$0.30
$0.04
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Jacks Knacks 1 $0.05
Graham Collectables 2 $0.06
Karns Cards 1 $0.07
Bayside Thrift 2 $0.08
Elementalgames 3 $0.08
BaT Comics Games 4 $0.08
Grimmus 1 $0.09
Crimson Wing Games 1 $0.09
Atomic Dreams 2 $0.09
Gam3 no 11 $0.09
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Celestial Archon Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Celestial Archon

Constructed: 1

This seems a little too expensive in terms of the bestow cost to be a reasonable card in constructed but there is a chance that Air Elemental with first strike is desired somewhere along the line and makes this a little more playable.

Limited: 4.0

While most of the removal in this set can pick off a four toughness creature, your opponent is going to have to have one of those removal spells or be in some trouble. If you bestow this, even a single removal spell isn't doing the trick.

Mid
Low
 Chained to the Rocks
$0.57
$0.12
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The Mithril Core 2 $0.12
Monterey Bay Cards 3 $0.19
The Wizards Duel 1 $0.20
Graham Collectables 1 $0.20
cogentmtg 1 $0.25
RHC Games 4 $0.25
Old Man Adventures 1 $0.25
Exiled Games 2 $0.25
Espeon Effect 1 $0.25
Titan Games PR 3 $0.25
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Chained to the Rocks Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Chained to the Rocks

Constructed: 2.5

This is obviously a very powerful effect but you have to question just how much the restriction will hurt the amount of play this sees. Saving two full mana on Oblivion Ring is a big upside for the RW players and makes this much more of an aggressive card should you be interested in that sort of thing.

Limited: 3.0

Obviously this is a RW card and very rarely will be a consideration elsewhere. That said, if you are RW, you should be taking this every time. If you are just white, you may want to consider figuring out a way to splash a Mountain because this is quite strong. Enchantment removal does hurt the reliability of this though.

Mid
Low
 Chosen by Heliod
$0.15
$0.01
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Mana Rock Gaming 1 $0.01
Wood Tower Gaming 2 $0.01
Graham Collectables 58 $0.01
MTGCCG and More 19 $0.02
BaT Comics Games 5 $0.02
Mtgaok 1 $0.02
GalacticTCG 21 $0.02
HouseofCards Winston 2 $0.02
Keltorn 1 $0.02
SalesbyStephenB 3 $0.02
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Chosen by Heliod Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Chosen by Heliod

Constructed: 1

A cantripping aura that triggers heroic has a small shot at seeing play, as we have discussed many different times by this point.

Limited: 1.5

While this is not a great effect, the fact that this replaces itself and can go toward other uses as well, makes it perfectly fine. Heck, maybe two toughness is enough of a bonus that this is actually a decent stat boost even!

Mid
Low
 Dauntless Onslaught
$0.22
$0.01
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Graham Collectables 24 $0.02
Team Blue Dot 4 $0.02
ILikeCards 1 $0.02
GalacticTCG 5 $0.02
HouseofCards Winston 10 $0.02
The Upkeep Games 3 $0.02
Gam3 no 6 $0.02
Karns Cards 2 $0.02
Magic Mana Vault 2 $0.02
Mages Library 4 $0.02
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Dauntless Onslaught Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Dauntless Onslaught

Constructed: 1

This is the type of card that I am pretty sure will never see play but I have a small area of doubt. Spending three mana on a total of +4/+4 is not very appealing but white is the color with the most heroic creatures, where this can shine.

Limited: 2.5-3.0

This is a very strong combat trick in limited where it will often end up generating a two-for-one independent of the number of heroic creatures you have. This is difficult to keep up on defense but as an offensive card, it can be a blowout.

Mid
Low
 Decorated Griffin
$0.22
$0.01
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Gims Cards 3 $0.01
BaT Comics Games 5 $0.01
Gam3 no 8 $0.01
debras cards 2 $0.01
Mana Rock Gaming 1 $0.01
GalacticTCG 4 $0.01
HouseofCards Winston 11 $0.01
Mages Library 4 $0.01
MagicMama 10 $0.02
Get Some Game 8 $0.02
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Decorated Griffin Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Decorated Griffin

Constructed: 0

There are a lot of reasons why this compares favorably to Baneslayer Angel. For example, Baneslayer Angel had the very difficult casting cost of 3WW whereas this is much more forgiving at 4W. Alright, maybe that is the only way it compares favorably...

Limited: 2.0

This guy is a little bit overcosted, which knocks him down a peg, but as we have discussed many times by now, evasion in a set with so many auras is pretty strong. The activated ability on this is a little weird, only stopping combat damage, but it seems mildly useful at least.

Mid
Low
 Divine Verdict
$0.16
$0.01
Store QTY Price  
Gims Cards 3 $0.01
The War Zone 1 $0.01
BaT Comics Games 5 $0.01
Renaissance Games 2 $0.01
Chaos Games NWA 17 $0.01
Gam3 no 1 $0.01
Alpha Nerd Prime 1 $0.01
Gamerz Den 9 $0.01
Dogs of War Gaming 20 $0.01
PlusOneMetairie 7 $0.01
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Divine Verdict Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Divine Verdict

Constructed: 0

Too expensive to be a real consideration in Standard, although I have seen someone play Avenging Arrow before...

Limited: 2.5

This is pretty important in a world of giant monsters and auras. Unfortunately, four mana makes this less surprising than it used to be as most people can see it coming., That said, white needs to removal so it will still almost always play this.

Mid
Low
 Elspeth, Sun's Champion
$12.25
$8.61
Store QTY Price  
Ulrich and Helvas 1 $9.00
Guild Mage 1 $9.00
EdwinFelspar 1 $9.00
Trade Routes MTG 1 $9.39
HouseofCards Winston 1 $9.49
AllFunAndGamesPA 1 $9.70
East Coast Gaming 1 $9.75
Moose Loot 2 $9.97
Nemo Card Shop 1 $9.98
Old Man Adventures 1 $9.99
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Elspeth, Sun's Champion Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Elspeth, Sun's Champion

Constructed: 2.5

I don't think Elspeth will be format defining like her four mana version, but it will see a little play, almost certainly more niche than traditional though. Playing her in heavy control strategies makes some amount of sense at least. The big issue is whether spending six mana on that effect is worthwhile.

Limited: 4.5

Obviously one of the best cards you can open in Theros. Producing an army every turn while she ticks up in loyalty is pretty absurd all by itself. Then, she gets to Smite down all those Monstrous creatures running around as well. And if you ever get to her ultimate, good job winning the game!

Mid
Low
 Ephara's Warden
$0.16
$0.01
Store QTY Price  
Mages Library 4 $0.01
Get Some Game 8 $0.01
Chaos Games NWA 26 $0.01
Dogs of War Gaming 20 $0.01
Mana Rock Gaming 1 $0.01
ThePawnShop 16 $0.01
Immortals Inc 43 $0.01
Gims Cards 3 $0.01
Get Some Game 8 $0.01
Midwest Jedi 14 $0.01
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Ephara's Warden Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Ephara's Warden

Constructed: 0

Four mana for a conditional tapper does not seem very promising. When we had a one mana tapper in the format that could tap anything, it saw very limited play.

Limited: 2.0

This is pretty slow and does not have the size body you would want to make sure it sticks around and has an impact. That said, removal is always playable and this does act as removal for some subset of cards at the very least. Auras and monstrous make this ability worse than it otherwise would be though.

Mid
Low
 Evangel of Heliod
$0.24
$0.01
Store QTY Price  
Graham Collectables 6 $0.01
BaT Comics Games 4 $0.04
GalacticTCG 23 $0.05
HouseofCards Winston 17 $0.05
Battle of Wizards 2 $0.06
debras cards 2 $0.06
RIW Hobbies 67 $0.07
IDeal808 73 $0.07
FernandezCards 5 $0.07
Karns Cards 1 $0.07
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Evangel of Heliod Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Evangel of Heliod

Constructed: 1

This seems a tad expensive for what you get out of the deal. Because you only get a 1/3 body for six mana, the entire card is essentially counting on the devotion to work well. That is fine as there is a high ceiling, but it is also very risky and will probably keep this out of constructed.

Limited: 3.0

An army of 1/1s is good at almost any point in the game, especially when the number of 1/1s can continue to scale up throughout the game. You really want to be as heavily white as possible once you draft this as the base body is not going to be impressive.

Mid
Low
 Fabled Hero
$0.44
$0.12
Store QTY Price  
qdojo 4 $0.14
Brass Games 2 $0.15
Scorched Apple MTG 1 $0.15
MTGCCG and More 5 $0.15
Leos Artifacts 6 $0.18
Aether Gaming 1 $0.18
Golden Phoenix Games 1 $0.19
cardboard galore 1 $0.20
Stabbies cards 1 $0.20
BaT Comics Games 3 $0.20
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Fabled Hero Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Fabled Hero

Constructed: 2

This seems like a bit of a tricky card to use without any form of protection and only two toughness. His ability is especially interesting though as you can dump just a few pump spells on this and it is hitting for 20 all of a sudden. This is nowhere near where Silverblade Paladin was at, but it has a fighting chance.

Limited: 3.0

Double strike is very strong in limited and will make this guy a very difficult thing to block profitably. Unfortunately, he still has no way to protect himself nor evasion so you probably need to do a little work to optimize this.

Mid
Low
 Favored Hoplite
$0.48
$0.08
Store QTY Price  
BaT Comics Games 4 $0.04
The Wizards Duel 1 $0.04
TC Collective 1 $0.08
Sorrows Path 11 $0.10
FernandezCards 3 $0.13
Heroes Ink Comics 9 $0.20
The CollectiveCCG 2 $0.24
Exiled Games 1 $0.25
Old Man Adventures 3 $0.25
onemillioncardman 6 $0.25
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Favored Hoplite Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Favored Hoplite

Constructed: 1.5

This is an interesting one-drop that I expect will end up see play if the Fabled Hero from above sees play due to the overlap in their abilities. Don't expect this to be the next Champion of the Parish, but this is far from an embarrassing card in the right deck.

Limited: 2.0

As a one-drop, this has some huge upsides as it will continue to scale with the game and has a natural protection clause that allows it to rumble into combat with immunity. Be sure and use the ability at instant speed for maximum effect.

Mid
Low
 Gift of Immortality
$2.01
$1.01
Store QTY Price  
The CollectiveCCG 1 $0.98
A Curious Museum 2 $1.01
The War Zone 1 $1.18
actionmtg 4 $1.25
Mage's Sanctum 1 $1.28
Auggie's Games 2 $1.29
Game On BD 1 $1.35
ClassicalCardsNMore 3 $1.35
Scorchulators LLC 4 $1.40
Land In Front 1 $1.47
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Gift of Immortality Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Gift of Immortality

Constructed: 2

This is a very unique effect that is slightly niche, but also very powerful in the right framework. I think that constructed tends to be a hostile place for a card like this, with exiling and Counterspells being very popular, but this has a chance at making some really unique decks.

Limited: 3.5

This is a must deal with card that will otherwise preserve and protect your opponent's strongest creature (assuming they hold it correctly). While that effect will not inherently win you the game, if you have managed to draft a strong or synergy-based creature, this will be valuable to you.

Mid
Low
 Glare of Heresy
$0.24
$0.01
Store QTY Price  
Scorched Apple MTG 1 $0.03
Frankobaby 4 $0.03
GalacticTCG 133 $0.03
Atomic Dreams 3 $0.04
DarkConfidant 4 $0.04
Cards On Consignment 8 $0.04
MajesticTreasuresTCG 1 $0.04
Card Haven Games 3 $0.04
Karns Cards 1 $0.04
Dark Depths Games 9 $0.04
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Glare of Heresy Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Glare of Heresy

Constructed: 2

Probably the most powerful effect of the new hate cards in a vacuum (Gainsay isn't new) due to the range of things this can hit. From Detention Sphere to Angel of Serenity, this can answer it while others are limited to creatures, or Mountains even. Being a sorcery sucks, so there is a chance this won't see much play while Oblivion Ring exists.

Limited: 1.0

Another sideboard-mostly but very powerful card. Again, if you can afford to, through ways to discard it etc, running this main will have some huge payoffs in the mirror.

Mid
Low
 Gods Willing
$0.20
$0.01
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Sorrows Path 2 $0.03
Wood Tower Gaming 3 $0.03
Graham Collectables 47 $0.04
BaT Comics Games 4 $0.04
Golden Phoenix Games 6 $0.05
Jacks Knacks 1 $0.05
Alpha Nerd Prime 1 $0.05
Mages Library 4 $0.05
Arrowstar Games 15 $0.06
Scorched Apple MTG 4 $0.07
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Gods Willing Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Gods Willing

Constructed: 1.5

While this is not the type of card that very many types of decks actively want, for just one mana you get to protect a valuable creature and generate some card selection. With heroic being a thing, I expect this to show up on occasion as a means of protecting those valiant heroes!

Limited: 1.5-2.0

A relatively strong combat trick but a much better Counterspell against removal. This effect was playable without the scry ability and should just get a boost from it. Once again, a great heroic enabler as well.

Mid
Low
 Heliod, God of the Sun
$4.74
$2.97
Store QTY Price  
Gongaii Games 1 $2.97
The Lotus Lookout 1 $2.97
KJ American Gaming 1 $2.99
Ulrich and Helvas 1 $3.00
McGeeAndMe MTG 1 $3.00
Guild Mage 1 $3.00
Cimino Yugioh 1 $3.25
Land In Front 3 $3.27
Common Ground Games 1 $3.27
Phreakus 1 $3.36
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Heliod, God of the Sun Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Heliod, God of the Sun

Constructed: 2.5

Another god that I am not too sure of in terms of how popular it will be. While the activated ability is pretty nice on this, it is very expensive. Add to that that the passive is fairly blah and it is hard to be excited by this. That said, this can be a monster in control mirrors and things of that nature, so I expect it to see play, just not dominate anything.

Limited: 4.5

Obviously this thing will just win you the game on your own. You get to play offense while you play defense and generate bodies every turn without the cost of a card holding you back. Basically unbeatable.

Mid
Low
 Heliod's Emissary
$0.23
$0.01
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Graham Collectables 18 $0.01
Mana Rock Gaming 1 $0.01
SalesbyStephenB 1 $0.02
Karns Cards 3 $0.02
DarkConfidant 3 $0.03
Mages Library 4 $0.03
Level Up MN 24 $0.04
The Gaming Cantina 23 $0.04
The Gaming Cantina 23 $0.04
Auggie's Games 6 $0.04
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Heliod's Emissary Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Heliod's Emissary

Constructed: 0

As a Hill Giant with an ability, this has some potential, but the bestow cost really needs to be cheaper to take this seriously. Seven mana on a card that not only does not win the game, but probably barely impacts it is just not going to cut it.

Limited: 3.5

This is a very strong card for four mana, being both large enough to be relevant and helping your other troops make it through. If you managed to drop this for seven though, now you have security in your ability to continue attacking and tapping down troublesome blockers.

Mid
Low
 Hopeful Eidolon
$0.18
$0.02
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Wood Tower Gaming 1 $0.03
Geeks and Games 1 $0.05
Golden Phoenix Games 4 $0.05
Alpha Nerd Prime 1 $0.05
Arrowstar Games 37 $0.06
Graham Collectables 2 $0.07
FernandezCards 1 $0.07
SynkUP 1 $0.08
BaT Comics Games 5 $0.08
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Hopeful Eidolon Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Hopeful Eidolon

Constructed: 0

A neat little package of a creature to be sure, but I don't think there is much room for cards with such a small impact on the game to find their way past thousands of other cards to make your final 60.

Limited: 2.0

A small tip with this guy: Do not cast him for one mana! While most of the bestow creatures can hold their own when cast as creatures, this guy goes from having a large impact as an aura to such a small impact as a creature. Enjoy the 1/1 as a bonus, should your aura-wearer die, but do not start out there.

Mid
Low
 Hundred-Handed One
$0.29
$0.06
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Karns Cards 1 $0.06
Graham Collectables 2 $0.08
MTGCCG and More 2 $0.10
VnJ Cards 1 $0.10
Lenlock Hobbies 2 $0.10
MDBrooksCards 1 $0.10
Noble inc 1 $0.10
Comic Asylum 8 $0.10
Leos Artifacts 2 $0.10
Cheese Boy Cards 1 $0.10
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Hundred-Handed One Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Hundred-Handed One

Constructed: 1

This does not seem like it has a deck that really wants it. While a 3/5 vigilance for four mana is hardly bad, and it comes with a strange but flavorful upside, what deck wants that? Control? It doesn't generate card advantage after all. Will be interesting to see if I am missing something with this one.

Limited: 3.5-4.0

A very strong rate that should start dominating the board as early as turn four. Obviously once you Monstrify this bad boy, your opponent is forced to deal with it basically before they can go on to win the game.

Mid
Low
 Lagonna-Band Elder
$0.17
$0.01
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Keltorn 7 $0.01
OldCollectionShop 2 $0.01
Defiant Fox Games 27 $0.01
gemwest 3 $0.01
The Game Knights 1 $0.01
Mages Library 4 $0.01
MagicMama 4 $0.01
debras cards 1 $0.01
McNabb Games 1 $0.01
Sleevecard Games 1 $0.01
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Lagonna-Band Elder Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Lagonna-Band Elder

Constructed: 1

This obviously compares very unfavorably to Centaur Healer but there could end up being a white enchantment deck that doesn't dip into green that wants this kind of effect.

Limited: 1.5-2.0

A mostly unexciting Barony Vampire. If this gains you some life, at least it is a real card at that point. Don't take this too highly because you remember how good Centaur Healer was.

Mid
Low
 Last Breath
$0.16
$0.01
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Alpha Nerd Prime 1 $0.01
Wood Tower Gaming 2 $0.01
BaT Comics Games 2 $0.01
Graham Collectables 48 $0.01
Mages Library 3 $0.01
McNabb Games 4 $0.01
debras cards 8 $0.02
Chaos Games NWA 18 $0.02
Dogs of War Gaming 20 $0.02
PlusOneMetairie 15 $0.02
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Last Breath Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Last Breath

Constructed: 2

This is one of those cards that pops up once or twice during its stay in Standard. Usually it is trying to solve some niche problem that has popped up but this could also be a weapon for control to deal with aggro early. The life gain is most irrelevant at that point anyway.

Limited: 2.0

Small creatures are not nearly as instrumental to this format as the bigger ones are so the value of this is not at the value of the other removal spells in the set. Still, this picks off pesky utility creatures and the first copy will usually make your deck.

Mid
Low
 Leonin Snarecaster
$0.18
$0.01
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BaT Comics Games 5 $0.01
Mana Rock Gaming 1 $0.01
Graham Collectables 48 $0.01
Mages Library 3 $0.02
MTGCCG and More 20 $0.02
Gims Cards 4 $0.02
Good Times 5 $0.02
SalesbyStephenB 2 $0.02
Keltorn 5 $0.02
debras cards 5 $0.02
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Leonin Snarecaster Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Leonin Snarecaster

Constructed: 1

A bear with a relevant ability always has a chance at seeing constructed play. This is essentially Goblin Shortcutter but in a color that could use a way to clear blockers a little more.

Limited: 2.0

A pretty strong two-drop that is usually going to be best later than turn two. It actually kind of sucks that the effect is not very good on the turn you have access to it, but as this format seems to be a little slower, at least your two-drop is relevant later.

Mid
Low
 Observant Alseid
$0.17
$0.01
Store QTY Price  
Mages Library 4 $0.02
debras cards 4 $0.02
Karns Cards 4 $0.02
Mana Rock Gaming 2 $0.02
HouseofCards Winston 21 $0.02
BaT Comics Games 5 $0.02
MTGCCG and More 20 $0.02
Defiant Fox Games 5 $0.03
Keltorn 8 $0.03
MagicDragon 2 $0.03
Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card Observant Alseid Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Observant Alseid

Constructed: 0

Bestow, in general, is a mechanic generated for limited play and this guy is a perfect reason why. Five mana is not unreasonable for this effect in limited, but in constructed, you are competing with the likes of Thragtusk or Baneslayer Angel where this no longer compares favorably.

Limited: 2.0-2.5

Not the best body in the world but the bestow cost is at least reasonable. You always have to ask yourself what you are left with when the aura-wearer dies. In this case, it is a pretty weak Gray Ogre, which does limit how good this can be.

Mid
Low
 Ordeal of Heliod
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Arrowstar Games 22 $0.08
Graham Collectables 6 $0.08
Pandemic Liquidation 1 $0.09
OldSchoolGaming 8 $0.09
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Magic MTG Card Ordeal of Heliod Magic MTG Card
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Ordeal of Heliod

Constructed: 1

I am not quite sure 10 life is worth the investment this requires, but I also think this is the most likely of the group to actually reach its goal. Opponents will usually shrug it off even though 10 life is a heck of a lot.

Limited: 2.0

Beefing up a guy is quite strong as we can tell from all the giant things running around but ten life is also a big deal in racing situations. Heroic, etc., etc.

Mid
Low
 Phalanx Leader
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$0.02
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Magic MTG Card Phalanx Leader Magic MTG Card
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Phalanx Leader

Constructed: 2

This guy seems like he might be white weenie worthy (www). If you manage to trigger him once, you have paid him off basically and anything more than that is just icing on the cake. That said, white weenie is not known for its plethora of pump spells, but perhaps with enough auras the deck might be good.

Limited: 3.0

One of the stronger heroic abilities in limited as it scales so much. Not only does it scale with more triggers, but it also scales with the number of creatures you have out, a common goal in limited Magic.

Mid
Low
 Ray of Dissolution
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Magic MTG Card Ray of Dissolution Magic MTG Card
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Ray of Dissolution

Constructed: 0

I can't imagine people turning to this over basically anything else. Oblivion Ring and Solemn Offering are probably both better ever though they are sorcery speed and that is ignoring the ability to go into other colors for things like Naturalize.

Limited: 1.5

This is a relatively strong removal spell in this set even though it would be sideboard chaff elsewhere. While I don't think you always start this, I think you are fine doing so when you need to. Being an instant is huge in a set with so many aura's as well.

Mid
Low
 Scholar of Athreos
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$0.01
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debras cards 5 $0.03
Xulub 4 $0.03
The Gaming Cantina 45 $0.03
DarkConfidant 4 $0.03
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Scholar of Athreos

Constructed: 0

Horned Turtle has never really impressed anyone in constructed, despite many abilities that it has worn. Calcite Snapper was probably the best one we have seen in recent memory at least. This has an ability that is heavily overcosted in two-player games though, so I don't think that will be getting it over the hump.

Limited: 2.0

A pretty decent defensive creature which is important because you want this to just sit around while you dump mana into it and kill the opponent. Dense early into a win condition late is more than reasonable.

Mid
Low
 Setessan Battle Priest
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Magic MTG Card Setessan Battle Priest Magic MTG Card
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Setessan Battle Priest

Constructed: 0

A really small body and a minimal output for what is not the easiest task in the world to actually accomplish. There is good life gain out there to turn to.

Limited: 1.5

Not a very exciting card but this can be used to defend you while you setup your better heroic creatures. If you have a couple multi-target spells, this will give you a free benefit while you beef up your Wingsteed Rider or whatever.

Mid
Low
 Setessan Griffin
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Gims Cards 1 $0.01
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Magic MTG Card Setessan Griffin Magic MTG Card
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Setessan Griffin

Constructed: 0

If only you could actually activate this multiple times a turn it would be amazing in Legacy elfball among other things. Missed an opportunity with this one, Wizards...

Limited: 2.5-3.0 (if green)

But for real, I am not a huge fan of the once per turn limit on this since it is so hard to actually activate with a double green cost. This is actually easier to splash if you are monogreen rather than monowhite, which is a little awkward and breaks the cycle. In terms of gameplay, it flies and is relatively efficient, so play it.

Mid
Low
 Silent Artisan
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debras cards 1 $0.02
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Magic MTG Card Silent Artisan Magic MTG Card
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Silent Artisan

Constructed: 0

For once in its life, Thraben Purebloods is “strictly” better than something. Take that Siege Mastodon! (I'm being told Siege Mastodon is also “strictly” better than this, so take that Silent Artisan!)

Limited: 1.0

Not a very good card, especially with the plethora of other big mana options in the format, but sometimes you gotta run a giant, right?

Mid
Low
 Soldier of the Pantheon
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Soldier of the Pantheon

Constructed: 3

I am not entirely sure if this deserves a three or a little lower, but I think it will see quite a bit of play in Standard at the very least and might transition over to Modern. Both formats see a lot of multicolor cards. For example, this sneaks right past Loxodon Smiter and Boros Reckoner, which is pretty impressive.

Limited: 1.5-2.5

This is essentially just a one mana 2/1 because its ability rarely comes up and is useful even less often. That said, if you want an aggressive deck, this guy naturally jumps in value.

Mid
Low
 Spear of Heliod
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Magic MTG Card Spear of Heliod Magic MTG Card
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Spear of Heliod

Constructed: 2.5

I would have given Glorious Anthem at least a two and I think this is at least decently better than that. You probably run less overall copies of this due to the legendary status, making it less reliable to draw, but giving aggressive decks a removal spell that they don't need to really spend a card on is pretty cool.

Limited: 3.5

I can't imagine a deck where this is not good. Obviously the Avenging Arrow clause can only happen so many times before it shuts off, but Glorious Anthem is also just awesome.

Mid
Low
 Traveling Philosopher
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Traveling Philosopher

Constructed: 0

Grizzly Bears ain't got no place in standard and neither does his more enlightened cousin.

Limited: 1.0

I am not a really big fan of any vanilla bear in this format when there are so many better alternatives with abilities and upsides.

Mid
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 Vanquish the Foul
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Vanquish the Foul

Constructed: 0

While I like me some Smite the Monstrous and even though the four mana version had a very small chance at seeing play, adding two mana on to the effect does absolutely no help to a borderline card.

Limited: 2.5-3.0

Even though this is expensive, it is a great way to take out Monstrous creatures and heavily aura'd up guys without them needing to walk into something like Divine Verdict. Scrying for one is not the greatest, but at least it can help ensure you don't hit a land that late or whatever.

Mid
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 Wingsteed Rider
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Magic MTG Card Wingsteed Rider Magic MTG Card
Magic MTG Card

Wingsteed Rider

Constructed: 1

Like all of these heroic guys that are reasonably priced and that can scale, I think this guy has a small shot at seeing play. It will probably have to compete with Fabled Hero though, which is not a battle it will win.

Limited: 3.0

A really strong early game play that will have the ability to outscale basically everything else in the air. This can easily end up being the most aggressive card in your deck and it comes at common. Make sure your mana can support it!

Mid
Low
 Yoked Ox
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Yoked Ox

Constructed: 1

I think that 0/4 walls are actually fringe playable against a lot of aggressive decks that could exist. Now, whether they end up existing and whether this is better than the alternative, I am not sure, but it could be a contender.

Limited: 1.0

I would not want to main deck this very often but as a sideboard card it can be pretty strong against very specific aggressive strategies, say ones that might involve a 2/3 that has to attack each turn.


Wrap Up

I think that, in general, white gets a lot of cards that have a lot of potential or look good on paper, but they could easily not end up being good. That said, if control and green midrange is not dominating the other aggressive or midrange strategies, some of these cards can be build-arounds. It will be interesting to see when the white goods are at their best, because I think it will end up being as a foil to an established metagame.

We will be taking a break over the weekend, but on Monday we will be wrapping up our Theros review. Join us as we discuss the artifacts, lands, and multicolor cards from the set. In addition, we will have a bit of a discussion on the future of Standard as well as go over the Top 8 cards for Constructed. So go out, enjoy your release events, and come back here on Monday for our finale! Thanks for reading!

--Conley Woods--